Part 1 of Macklowe art collection auctioned for $ 676 million


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Illustration photo of Harry Macklowe and Linda Macklowe (Getty / Illustration by Kevin Rebong for The Real Deal)

The reverberations of Harry and Linda Macklowe’s acrimonious divorce echoed in the art world on Monday night as more than half of their treasured collection was sold at auction.

Held at Sotheby’s Monday night, the auction of 35 works from the collection grossed $ 676.1 million, beating the auction house’s estimates. Sotheby’s expected the works to sell for between $ 440 million and $ 620 million. An executive told the New York Times the sale was the “most valuable sole proprietorship auction ever.”

A court had ordered the sale of the artwork and the sharing of the proceeds after the promoter and his ex-wife, who was the driving force behind assembling the collection, could not agree on the value of their 65-piece art collection.

Linda Macklowe’s expert had set the total value at $ 625 million while the developer’s expert estimated $ 788 million. An insurance estimate made in 2015, before the couple’s divorce proceedings began, valued the collection at more than $ 937 million.

Linda Macklowe’s expert estimate was exceeded on Monday despite only 35 of the 65 pieces sold. Indeed, all three estimates appear to have been lower than the current art value.

(Getty Images)

The auction showed buyers were eager to collect rare works of art that had been part of the Macklowes’ collection for decades. A majority of the 35 works sold on Monday appeared at auction for the first time.

Four works sold for more than $ 50 million: paintings by Mark Rothko, Cy Twombly and Jackson Pollock, and “The Nose” by sculptor Alberto Giacometti. The no. 7 “sold for $ 82.5 million after an eight-minute bidding war, the second-highest price ever for any of his works. Giacometti’s sculpture, the only one of his works to ever make the privately sold, sold for $ 78.4 million, a record for the artist.

The no.  7

The no. 7 “(Getty Images)

“There is no doubt that the market has raised its hand tonight, not just for masterpieces, but in honor of the art of collecting at its highest level,” said Mari-Claudia Jimenez. , President and CEO of Global Fine Art, in a press release.

Perhaps the world honored the art of collecting, but much of the fine art purchased these days goes into storage, as private buyers and museums do not have enough exhibition space or are looking for returns on investment rather than viewing the works. Storing art in tax-free enclaves maximizes return on investment.

The remaining 30 Macklows works will be sold in a second auction scheduled for May. The developer did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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